Every day in my email in-box are interesting stories and questions from would-be clients. Today’s blog is about a news story having to do with Iowa personal injury law, a wrongful death claim, a car accident, a dead passenger and an allegation of intoxication.

SUV Crashes and Passenger Dies, Is there a dram shop claim?

We handle this type of lawsuit. These are lawsuits against bars for dependent relatives of the people who die because of drunk drivers. In this case in Des Moines a man was charged with vehicular homicide after a passenger died after he climbed behind the wheel and crashed the car. The crash impact killed the passenger. The news report indicates the driver may have been intoxicated.

In another case we represented the child of the drunk driver who himself died in the accident. The bar where he was all day drinking had dram shop insurance and that insurance company paid us $150,000 to settle the case.

In another case we represented the wife and in another the dependent children. No matter if the drunk is the driver or a passenger you should call us for a free opinion about whether or not we think you have a case against the bar.

Here is the story about the news item reported on KCCI. Driver charged in fatal SUV crash, KCCI News 8

DES MOINES, Iowa —A man has been charged with vehicular homicide and other crimes after the death of a woman who was riding with him when his SUV crashed in Des Moines.
Police believe 32-year-old Damien Brockett was intoxicated while driving south on Second Avenue the night of Dec. 16. The SUV hit a garbage container, went over a curb, ran back onto the roadway and into northbound lanes. The SUV stopped when it hit a wall of a senior center.

Authorities say Brockett's passenger, 34-year-old Cara Nelson, died late last week.

Jail records said Brockett remained in custody on Tuesday. Online court records don't list the name of his attorney in the case.

Now that is an interesting set of facts. We can’t tell if the driver was intoxicated or if intoxicated whether a case can be proven, but we know from the sound of things a case is highly likely. I’ve been a trial lawyer for over 30 years and I still do most of the investigation including visiting the accident scene. Here is a photograph from a recent case I personally investigated. The sooner I’m involved the better it is for my clients. Why do I like to be contacted immediately after a drunken driving accident? I like to be contacted immediately because every minute that goes by after the accident the more evidence that is either lost of destroyed.

So be forewarned, the insurance industry likes you to delay contacting a lawyer because when the evidence disappears so does your case. The less evidence available the more likely it is you cannot prove your claim. So call us. 515-222-1110.

Steve Lombardi
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Iowa personal injury, workers' compensation, motorcycle, quadriplegic, paraplegic, brain injury, death
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